If your anything like me you would have spent loads of your time making this statement and it would be finished with some big dreams or something very different to the situation that you were or are currently in.
I used to do this all the time. Especially about work, I was always making this statement and writing down dreams, drawing pictures of stages and my blog logo but I guess I underestimated my power. I never really realised how much I was truly manifesting the change I wanted until now. It is a year from then…(well a few years from then) and my life is completely different.
I have worked in recruitment for a long time (over 8 years) and I well and truly love my career. It combines all my favourite things (minus the food) but it is all about talking and people. I went from agency recruitment to in house (I’m not very good at the pushy sales bit no offence to anyone in the industry) and it suited me perfectly and dare I say it – I am pretty blooming good at it. I worked my way up over the course of the years from a recruitment assistant to running a resourcing function and I genuinely love what I do – I mean it speaks volumes that even after my waters had broken I still tried to get onto a conference call.
However – there was a period of time that I really questioned whether this was the path for me because of one person. My old boss.
I can’t quite tell you where it all went wrong for me in this role because most people in the business I got on with and well she gave me the job initially so surely, I must have been ok to her at some point? But regardless, things changed and slowly but surely, she began to tear me down piece by piece. I would get picked on about tiny mistakes I made (literally tiny), I would get talked over, questioned and made to feel stupid. There was even an occasion after a team lunch that I was called into her office and she said “Sometimes I really want to just tell you to shut up. You know no one really likes you? I see it on their faces as you speak. In fact, Jess you remind me of my mum when she drinks, she isn’t self-aware at all. If I could video her and show her back she would be horrified, and I think you would be the same”. Please note – I was stone cold sober throughout the lunch and at work and I certainly haven’t got this wrong. I know I haven’t because the statement felt like I had been punched in the stomach and after I left her office I was physically sick in the toilet.
At the time I didn’t know what it was about me she didn’t like but as it got worse my “In a year from now’s” felt further and further away. She made me question who I was and my own capabilities so much even the most basic dreams or aspirations I had seemed far-fetched and ridiculous. I decided enough was enough and I put my CV out there. I applied for jobs that I was over qualified for because if she was right about me (and surely, she was given her job role and experience) then I just wasn’t fit for management anymore and I needed to do what I was capable of.
One day I had a call from a recruitment consultant and we went through all the standard questions; why you are leaving, salary, expectations etc. I gave all the answers I needed too and then he said “Jess, apologies if I am talking out of turn but I feel like there is something lurking? I think your CV looks great and based on this I would be expecting more”. I don’t know what possessed me, but I broke all the rules of recruitment and I was brutally honest – not saying it’s a dishonest industry but you don’t tell your potential recruiter how horrible your boss is and cry on the phone do you!
He let me talk and cry and apologise and then he simply said, “What are you worth?”. I didn’t quite understand what he meant, and I guess my “ermm” indicated this and he said “Jess, clearly you’re not in the right place where you need to be now. Your undervalued and you’re not being treated fairly so ignore what your current salary is, ignore what you believe she thinks you’re capable of – what do you think you can do and what are you worth and where do you want to be a year from now?”
I thought about for a while and I gave him a figure and an answer. 3 weeks later his client offered me a job £15,000 MORE per annum than my current salary. Of course, I accepted. In fact, I remember getting the call on the train on the way home from the final interview (they didn’t even wait an hour!) and I was super calm and professional. I then rang my mum and cried and screamed down the phone. Another woman on the train laughed at me and said congratulations my love as she left for her stop.
Of course, the salary increase was incredible, but it wasn’t just that. My new manager supported everything I did, I mean so much, so she bought tickets and came to my blog event. This wasn’t just a financial gain for me, but I gained friends, support, encouragement, freedom and my god did I work hard because I felt so valued and I knew I was reaping the benefits of all the hard work I put in.
Not only was my 9-5 now fulfilling me but because my attitude had now changed so had my life and my confidence. There were opportunities and doors flying open with my blog that I couldn’t quite believe where I was and where it was taking me. My blog even became “work”. I was able to earn a little money, I was being invited on to tv, to interview for magazines – I know this sounds a bit ridiculous and I still have places I want to go and so so so many more things to achieve and growth to make but my goodness – if only I had known what was coming for me a year from then.
I tell you all of this not to show off or to boast but to encourage. To let you know that if you are in a position that makes you unhappy, if there is someone or something in your life that you want to move away from then the only thing stopping you is you. I let someone else’s behaviour limit my own mind. I let someone else’s opinion of me delay me getting the positive things that were waiting for me that I was entitled to.
I have often wanted to email her or even recently send her links to pictures of me in national press or certificates from charities with donation amounts and pictures of my events but what good would that be? I realised she didn’t hate me and her behaviour wasn’t dictated by how she felt about me, it was a reflection of how she felt about herself. When I started working for her I was unapologetically myself, I made mistakes but never let them define me, I would shake it off, own it, learn from it and move on. She wasn’t like me – She often adapted her behaviour depending on who was in the room and she was intimidated by so many people, she wasn’t happy with who she was and her reaction to that was unfortunately me. Going back with some revengeful “look at me now” would do nothing but possibly make her feel worse and whilst there is a tiny bit of me that would get pleasure in that (I mean she made me cry A LOT) I know in my heart of hearts I am better than that.
I forgive her. I forgive her because in my pain, in my frustration and in my confidence knock I was manifesting great things and now I have even more to share, more to teach others and I have another lesson learned.
We cannot control what other people do or how they treat us, but we are totally in control of how we react to it. If you have seen black panther he has a suit that when knocked or attacked it savours the energy of that force and then when ready he can use all the power it has held on to to fight back. Do that. Use every knock and every set back as stepping stones, as power surges so when you’re ready to give it what you have you will be stepping into your power so confidently it will knock people backwards.
People won’t always see your worth or your value and that is ok but don’t let them allow you to question how much you value yourself.
So, like that recruitment consultant asked me – I am asking you “What are you worth and where will you be a year from now?”
Thanks for stopping by x
The Fat Funny One x
P.S Someone told me she often checks on my blog. You ok hun?